New Talent - Combat Tactics

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New Talent - Combat Tactics

Postby Dragon Son » Tue Nov 13, 2012 9:27 am

Hi all, this is a new talent for Dragon Age, it is designed with team play in mind, as you'll discover by reading below.

Combat Tactics
Requirements: Warrior or Rogue, Cunning 2+, Cunning (Tactics)

This talent allows cunning characters to use feints and set up organized attacks in order to destroy foes, all these are done through exemplary team efforts. The character must take an activate acton on his turn and designate a single target, all allies (including yourself) attacking that target enjoy the following benefits. The benefits remain as long as the character maintains that mode and only one mode can be active at any given time.

Novice/Tactical attack - When your allies attack that target, the bonus for outnumbering him/her increases by +1, (+2 for 2 attackers, +3 for 3 attackers), furthermore the upper limit to how high the bonus can reach is +4 for four attackers, as long as the mode is maintained.

Journeyman/Organised Assault - Allies attacking that target benefit from a -1 cost to all stunts,as long as the mode is maintained.

Master/Wolf Pack Tactics - If the target attacks one of your allies with a melee attack, the rest of your allies enjoy +1d6 damage when attacking the target until its next action,as long as the mode is maintained.

So there it is, really interested in hearing your feedback!
Last edited by Dragon Son on Fri Nov 30, 2012 2:57 am, edited 3 times in total.
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Re: New Talent - Combat Tactics

Postby shonuff » Tue Nov 13, 2012 9:19 pm

I would think that all characters involved would need to have the talent at the same level in order to receive the benefits.

That said, the talent as written looks to play clunky, and IMO looks like it would bog combat down.
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Re: New Talent - Combat Tactics

Postby Dragon Son » Tue Nov 13, 2012 9:48 pm

shonuff wrote:That said, the talent as written looks to play clunky, and IMO looks like it would bog combat down.


Why would it bog combat down? It's got no extra rolls, only bonuses, delaying your turn in initiative is not that big a deal I think.

shonuff wrote:I would think that all characters involved would need to have the talent at the same level in order to receive the benefits.


In order to make it less powerful? or just for better visualization of party tactics? On first thought I'm against this idea to be honest.
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Re: New Talent - Combat Tactics

Postby shonuff » Wed Nov 14, 2012 4:32 am

Dragon Son wrote:
shonuff wrote:That said, the talent as written looks to play clunky, and IMO looks like it would bog combat down.


Why would it bog combat down? It's got no extra rolls, only bonuses, delaying your turn in initiative is not that big a deal I think.


Just setting the turn up seems to be much more complicated. Maybe it won't play out that way, but looking at it on screen, I thought it seemed overly complex.

Dragon Son wrote:
shonuff wrote:I would think that all characters involved would need to have the talent at the same level in order to receive the benefits.


In order to make it less powerful? or just for better visualization of party tactics? On first thought I'm against this idea to be honest.


IMO, it doesn't make sense if only character knows what is going on. If you set up a feint so that someone else can have an opening, that other person, IMO, needs to know that feint and opening will be there, or the second person could be doing something entirely different.
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Re: New Talent - Combat Tactics

Postby Loswaith » Wed Nov 14, 2012 2:09 pm

For me this is rather lack luster. It doesn't seem to add much at all but an excuse for some extra damage for the "battle dogs", and doesn't feel like they are all that tactical in nature.

I cant wholely put my finger on why, but just feels rather bland.

I like the idea of some kind of tactical talent that can be beneficial in situations however.
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Re: New Talent - Combat Tactics

Postby shonuff » Wed Nov 14, 2012 2:15 pm

Offhand, I would change the journeyman talent to a stunt point reduction as opposed to base damage. That, or changing a die roll in order to gain a stunt.
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Re: New Talent - Combat Tactics

Postby Vaelorn » Wed Nov 14, 2012 2:48 pm

Have a look at this article by Josh Jarman: http://joshjarman.net/2011/07/04/stances/

This might cover some tactical variations for warriors. I've used this idea in a talent I've put into my Eberron mod.
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Re: New Talent - Combat Tactics

Postby Loswaith » Wed Nov 14, 2012 4:26 pm

Thinking on it more I'd likely use aspects similar to these (though not sure as to the ranks id use them at), trying not to overlap specialisations too.

Tactical Maneuver: As an activate action you spout orders and point out weak spots in your enemies. Any ally (including yourself) within 10 yards of you gains one additional stunt point anytime they generate stunts until untill the begining of your next turn.

Retreat: As an activate action you call the retreat. Any ally (including yourself) within 10 yards of you gains +2 to defence and an additional movement action on their next turn if they retreat from the battle.

Hold your Ground: As an activate action you call for your allies to hold the current position. Any ally (including yourself) within 10 yards of you gain a +2 bonus to defence and gain stand firm as a free action (instead of normally a minor action) until the begining of your next turn.

I suspect, I would most likely rank them Retreat, Tactical Maneuver, then Hold your ground, though not entirely certain.
A requirement of Cunning(Military Lore) atleast on it.

Personaly I don't realy see a need to give stacking attacks a bonus as it is a good tactical option in of itself.
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Re: New Talent - Combat Tactics

Postby Dragon Son » Wed Nov 14, 2012 7:23 pm

Dragon Age uses a combat system in which,

1) Your attacks will statistically usually succeed.

2) You actually need more damage in order to finish fights that can drag to forever.

The reason that the 1st talent gives a bonus to attack is because it is actually the weakest but still could come in handy in some occassions, when facing a high defense foe. The talent as written serves the task of setting up lethal team attacks because that's what I believe a non-tactical game, with lots of health, like Dragon Age needs. Perhaps the title combat tactics is misleading.

Loswaith wrote:Tactical Maneuver: As an activate action you spout orders and point out weak spots in your enemies. Any ally (including yourself) within 10 yards of you gains one additional stunt point anytime they generate stunts until untill the begining of your next turn.


I don't really like auras that grant psychological bonuses in combat, it reminds me of video games converted in pen and paper, which I'm not fond of.

Loswaith wrote:Retreat: As an activate action you call the retreat. Any ally (including yourself) within 10 yards of you gains +2 to defence and an additional movement action on their next turn if they retreat from the battle.


I don't know how useful this would be, furthermore in open terrain it could have some silly visualization, effectively doubling your speed when retreating.

Loswaith wrote:Hold your Ground: As an activate action you call for your allies to hold the current position. Any ally (including yourself) within 10 yards of you gain a +2 bonus to defence and gain stand firm as a free action (instead of normally a minor action) until the begining of your next turn.


Visually that's rather nice but I disagree with making combat drag even more, that's why I refrained from giving a bonus to Defense, which is what you suggest.
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Re: New Talent - Combat Tactics

Postby shonuff » Thu Nov 15, 2012 9:51 am

The way it is written, Retreat looks more like "Break and Run!" than a disciplined retreating action.

I would also probably add a choice of rerequisites: Communcation and Cunning 2; EITHER Cunning (Military Lore) OR Communication (Leadership).

And the novice level of the talent should probably be re-rolling the chosen focus (military lore or leadership) and keeping the second result.

Journeyman: As an activate action you spout orders and point out weak spots in your enemy. Any ally (including yourself) attacking your specifiec target generate 1 additional stunt point everytime they generate stunts. Additionally, when your allies attack the target, the bonus for outnumbering the target increase by +1, (+2 for 2 attackers, +3 for 3 attackers), furthermore the upper limit to how high the bonus can reach is +4 for four attackers.

Master: As an activate action you call for your allies to hold the current position. Any ally (including yourself) within 10 yards of you gain a +2 bonus to defence and gain stand firm as a free action (instead of normally a minor action) until you switch order modes. Additionally, any ally may alter one die roll by one in order to generate stunts (original dragon die roll would stand for stunt points generated).

First, I liberally copy/pasted a lot of this wording from Dragon Sun and Loswaith, so credit goes there.

Second, this will create order modes: Tactical Maneuvers (journeyman) and Hold Your Ground (master). Entering one mode or the other takes an activation action, but then is maintained until the mode is switched (or combat ended). IMO, having one character giving orders alleviates the need for all characters to have the combat tactics talent as originally written.
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Re: New Talent - Combat Tactics

Postby Dragon Son » Thu Nov 15, 2012 10:36 am

I'll reedit the talent based on the helpful feedback from shonuff and Loswaith.
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Re: New Talent - Combat Tactics

Postby Dragon Son » Thu Nov 15, 2012 11:12 am

Revised version complete.
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Re: New Talent - Combat Tactics

Postby Loswaith » Thu Nov 15, 2012 4:28 pm

Dragon Son wrote:...
I don't really like auras that grant psychological bonuses in combat, it reminds me of video games converted in pen and paper, which I'm not fond of. ...

This is typicaly how military orders went/go in essence, a psycological push of events and situational maneuvers. Someone shouts an order, others follow it.

Dragon Son wrote:...
Loswaith wrote:Retreat: As an activate action you call the retreat. Any ally (including yourself) within 10 yards of you gains +2 to defence and an additional movement action on their next turn if they retreat from the battle.

I don't know how useful this would be, furthermore in open terrain it could have some silly visualization, effectively doubling your speed when retreating. ...

Actually it works out to only about a 25% increase given you can run (double speed) as a major action and move (normal speed) as a minor action.

shonuff wrote:The way it is written, Retreat looks more like "Break and Run!" than a disciplined retreating action. ...

It could be used as such, though also gives the ability to make extra defencive/offencive actions and still allow some movement.

shonuff wrote:... I would also probably add a choice of rerequisites: Communcation and Cunning 2; EITHER Cunning (Military Lore) OR Communication (Leadership). ...

I did miss the leadership focus, I'd likely forgo both stat requirement for both the focuses, or have Communication 2 and leadership or Cunning 2 and militarty lore , but your way works too (and likely fits a bit better with RAW). Though with limiting bonuses to single targets leadership seems more fitting.

shonuff wrote: ... And the novice level of the talent should probably be re-rolling the chosen focus (military lore or leadership) and keeping the second result. ...

Good point, thats likely my dislike of the rerolls as talents, as they often feel a bit pointless, given the nature of the mostly succeed system the game has anyway (so rerolls will be few). Though it does fit with RAW better.

All in all can't say I'm a fan of limiting things to a single target for bonuses (personal pefrence), as it would bear little use in larger scale battles and thats where most cohesive tactics realy shine. Though that said tactics isn't just limited to larger groups it just generaly often associates with maneuvering of armies. Guess its one of those we all have our own spin on :)
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Re: New Talent - Combat Tactics

Postby shonuff » Thu Nov 15, 2012 6:35 pm

Loswaith wrote:
shonuff wrote: ... And the novice level of the talent should probably be re-rolling the chosen focus (military lore or leadership) and keeping the second result. ...

Good point, thats likely my dislike of the rerolls as talents, as they often feel a bit pointless, given the nature of the mostly succeed system the game has anyway (so rerolls will be few). Though it does fit with RAW better.


Re-rolls are more useful at the lower levels, IMO, which is fitting for novice level talents.

Loswaith wrote:All in all can't say I'm a fan of limiting things to a single target for bonuses (personal pefrence), as it would bear little use in larger scale battles and thats where most cohesive tactics realy shine. Though that said tactics isn't just limited to larger groups it just generaly often associates with maneuvering of armies. Guess its one of those we all have our own spin on :)


Depending on how you do things, the single target is easily scaleable to mass combat. Your target is an enemy unit, and your allies are your other units. So, human groups A & B could gain an extra flanking bonus on genlock group A but not hurlock group B. Units would be the equivalent of individuals.

Of course, I'm also typically against gaming out mass combat. IMO, in a campaign, the darkspawn need to always win at Ostagar and lose at Denerim.
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